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Harri Vaalio

Finnish artist who uses the pseudonym Wallu. He is mostly known for other works than Disney comics. He has done lots of humor comics and children´s books.
In 1985 the finnish publisher of Disney-comics, Sanomaprint (nowadays known as Sanoma), asked Wallu (and two other fellows*) to write and draw a five-page-story about Winnie The Pooh. According to Wallu Sanoma was not satisfied with the material that was coming from Denmark. Sanomaprint wanted to produce their own stories. So Wallu wrote and drew the story and editors of Sanomaprint took it (with the works of those other two artist) to USA and the US Disney said to go ahead with Wallu.
US Disney editors made him draw his first story again, but then it was published in Finnish Nalle Puh (Winnie The Pooh) comic book in 1986. After that he did ten more stories (4-8 pagers) to Finnish Winnie (5 was printed in normal Winnie-comic book, 6 in smaller Winnie Activity mag into which he also did some other drawings about Pooh). They have never been published elsewhere. The code they put in the first picture begin with letters SF.

You can check index of these stories on Wallu's own page. (dead link)

In addition he drew a couple of competition illustrations and some vignette pictures for the activity magazine. He also wrote and drew one story for Egmont:
"All the time I was drawing here in Finland the Danes didn't like it. It all came to end when they said to the Finns, that if I continued to draw they don't deliver any Donald Duck -material to Finland... So to keep themselves out of harm Sanomaprint didn't fire me but turned me to Gutenberghus. Then I wrote one storyline in English to Denmark and they said "go ahead". I drew the story (Winnie The Pooh goes Woozlehunting) and send it to them, but after a long time they sent me a letter in where they said that sorry, but I wasn't drawing the way Disney material was supposed to draw. They even told me that I drew in old american way, but they had a new way (made in spain...). And sorry but that's it, GOODBUY. They never paid me anything, and I was too angry to ask... I really don't know what happened to my 12th Winnie The Pooh -story."

*another was Rauli Nordberg, creator of Punaniska comic strip, another´s name Vaalio didn´t remember.

Vaalio's Winnie and TiggerWallu´s comics and home page:
Bittiviihdettä ja junttihuumoria (in Finnish)

Sources of information:

Harri Vaalio´s e-mail messages, September 2000.

Timo Ronkainen

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